3M Co. announced plans to buy a small medical device company that makes disinfected IV port caps and other products that come in contact with patients' bloodstreams, officials announced Thursday.

Terms were not disclosed.

By acquiring San Diego-based Ivera Medical Corp., 3M gains 60 employees and a company that makes disinfected medical products sold under the Curos brand.

Ivera, which generates about $30 million in annual revenue, is expected to mesh well with 3M's Tegaderm line of antimicrobial IV dressings.

"Our products play an important role in helping to reduce complications for patients with IV catheters," said Bill Cruise, general manager for 3M's critical and chronic care solutions division. "Together with Ivera, we can bring a broader array of vascular access solutions to move health care systems worldwide."

Infection prevention is a fast growing business and worrisome topic in the medical world as hospitals race to stomp out insidious post-surgical infections and other ailments that give hospitals a bad name and spur countless lawsuits each year.

Market research firm Freedonia Group estimates that the U.S. infection prevention market is poised to grow from $19.5 billion today to $24 billion in 2018.

Such numbers are not lost on 3M. Once its acquisition is completed, Ivera will join 3M's health care business, which generated $5.6 billion in revenue last year, up from $4.5 billion in 2010. Operating profits jumped to $1.7 billion last year, from $1.4 billion in 2010.

3M manufactures medical bandages, wraps, tapes, medicine patches and hundreds of other products. It successfully increased its health care presence in developing countries.

That global outreach proved particularly appealing to Ivera, said the company's CEO, Bob Rogers. "3M's great products, ample resources and worldwide presence … will accelerate global acceptance and growth of the Curos brand here in the United States and worldwide," he said.